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ISL: How many times has Sunil Chhetri been substituted by Bengaluru FC?

11:44 AM IST 04/12/21
Sunil Chhetri
It is not usual for Sunil Chhetri to leave the field early when Bengaluru are in need of a goal...

Bengaluru FC have had a slow start to their Indian Super League (ISL) campaign as they have just four points from three games. After making a winning start to their season they succumbed to a 3-1 defeat to Odisha and then went on to draw 1-1 against Kerala Blasters. Much is expected of the Blues as they have rejigged much of their overseas contingent and have got a new coach in Marco Pezzaiuoli.


Concerningly, talismanic skipper Sunil Chhetri has neither scored nor assisted so far. In fact, in their last match against Kerala Blasters when both teams were struggling to break the deadlock the German manager decided to take off Sunil Chhetri and replaced him with Prince Ibara in the 62nd minute.



It is not usual for the Bengaluru FC skipper to leave the field so early in a game and especially when the team needs a goal. So we tried to find out how many times has Chhetri been taken off in ISL?

There have been only nine times when he has been taken off in 80 matches since Bengaluru joined ISL. And out of those nine occasions, it was only thrice that he was replaced when Bengaluru needed a goal to win a match. And there is only one instance when the Blues have gone on to win a match after Chhetri was substituted.

On March 1, 2018, Bengaluru were yet to break the deadlock against Kerala Blasters. And yet, Chhetri was taken off in the 82nd minute by Albert Roca. However, that did not deter them from picking up the three points as Miku and Udanata Singh scored in added time.

Date

Fixture

Minute when substituted

Score at the time of substitution

Final Score

8/12/2017

NorthEast United vs Bengaluru

68'

0-1

0-1

31/12/2017

Kerala Blasters vs Bengaluru

88'

0-1

1-3

18/01/2018

Mumbai City vs Bengaluru

87'

1-3

1-3

03/02/2018

ATK vs Bengaluru

76'

0-1

0-2

09/02/2018

Bengaluru vs Goa

88'

2-0

2-0

1/03/2018

Bengaluru vs Kerala Blasters

82'

0-0

2-0

22/11/2020

Goa vs Bengaluru

86'

2-2

2-2

28/01/2021

Hyderabad vs Bengaluru

85'

0-2

2-2

28/11/2021

Bengaluru vs Kerala Blasters

62'

0-0

1-1



Regardless of this particular incident, Chhetri remains the best Indian goalscorer in the ISL and has the ability to score at any point in the game as he has shown plenty of times, especially in the recent past.

It is just a matter of time before he once again gets going. He is crucial to Bengaluru's hopes of winning the league shield and playing the AFC Champions League. Pezzaiuoli will be a relieved man once the Indian skipper starts firing on all cylinders.